4elements celebrates 15th anniversary with Elemental Festival

Arts festival on this weekend in Kagawong

KAGAWONG—This weekend, the Elemental Festival will be held in Kagawong, marking the 15th anniversary of 4elements Living Arts and the culmination of a massive community project to build Billings Connections Trail.

The festivities will start on the morning of Friday, September 29 with a free experimental music workshop with Moe Clark at the Park Centre from 11 am to 3 pm.

There will also be an experimental landscape-painting workshop with Sharon Hunter from 9:30 am to 4 pm. The cost is $80 and pre-registration is required.

There will be a 4e sunset cruise with North Channel Cruise Line at 4 pm, departing from the Kagawong Marina. The cost is $75 and includes dinner (a cash bar is also available). Tickets can be purchased at northchanneltours.com.

At the Park Centre, starting at 6 pm, Moe Clark will be performing. Moe Clark is a multidisciplinary Metis artist who interveaves circle singing and spoken word. Admission is by donation.

Saturday morning, the day will begin with a community art workshop at the Park Centre from 9 am until noon. “The community engaged workshop will encourage participants to question their relationship to the land and each other and to consider how art can play a role in social change,” says the workshop description.

The official unveiling of the Billings Connections Trail and sculpture walk and talk will leave from the Park Centre at 1 pm and go until 3 pm. Seven commissioned sculptures were developed over the last year around the themes of environment and Truth and Reconciliation as part of the Billings’ Connections Trail, The Billings Art and Heritage Project, and funded through the Canada 150 Fund, Ontario 150 and is supported by the Township of Billings.

The sculptures include: ‘The Globe’ by Hooman Mehdizadehjafari, a laser-cut steel sphere on a pedestal which will be located at the picnic area near the entrance to the east side of the Kagawong River Trail; ‘Great Lakes Trees’ by Kathryn Corbiere, two jack pine trees and one Great Lakes tree which will be located at Sandy Beach off of Maple Drive; ‘White Tail Deer’ by Robert Cram, a highly polished bronze that will patina over time, located at the west side of the Kagawong River Trail downriver of the blue footbridge; a sculpture by KWEST, Matt McNaught, which will be located near the entrance of the Kagawong River Trail by the tennis courts; ‘Ascend/Transcend’ by Ted Fullerton, three cold cast, resin figures on steel lifts, located on the Park Centre Lawn; ‘Drum Circle’ by Quinn Smallboy, a welded steel drum, on the Kagawong downtown lawn near chess set; and the Community Sculpture Project with Cree architect Jake Chakasim.

Also as part of the Billings Connections Trail was the installation of 32 historical interpretive plaques throughout Billings and a brand new Billings map with the new stops and sculptures listed.

The Kagawong Fibre Arts Group will be presenting an artists talk and demo at the Park Centre from 3:30 to 5 pm.

Jake Chakasim will lead a community-designed sculpture talk at the Billings Public Library from 3:30 to 5 pm.

At 5:30 pm there will be a musical performance by Melody McKiver, followed by a musical performance by Nick Sherman at the Park Centre at 6 pm. Admission for both is by donation. Melody McKiver is an emerging Anishinaabe musician, media artist, traditional powwow dancer and artist. Her musical talents span across viola, violin, drums and percussion with hip-hop, electronic, contemporary, classical, jazz and blue influences. Nick Sherman is a singer-songwriter from Sioux Lookout. He is inspired by the memories of his home reserve and great songwriters such as Ray LaMontagne and Elvis Costello.

Sunday morning will begin with a writing workshop with Kate Thompson at the Park Centre from 9:30 am to noon. Admission is $5 a person.

There will be a second Billings Connections Trail Sculptures Artists Walk and Talk leaving from the Park Centre from 1 to 3 pm.

The weekend will conclude with a film screening and artist talk with Paul Chaput at the Park Centre at 4 pm.

For more information, visit 4elementslivingarts.org.